This is the page that introduces you to the wonderful world of Maar Volcanoes. They are some of the most unusual and rare volcanoes on earth.

Nearly everyone has heard of volcanoes around the world and can probably name a few that they have visited. Especially Kiluea on Hawaii or perhaps Mt. St. Helen's in Washington. However one of the most puzzling aspects of Lava structure are what we call columnar jointing. They are stop sign-shaped joints that are columnar in nature and can extend several hundred feet down. A former graduate student Wende Williams is presently working on these joints attempting to explain the particulars of how they are formed. The picture above and to the left is a picture of the ash-soil line that you can see form ground level. Notice the color differentiation between the gray ash above and brown dirt below. The ash can be seen better in the two photographs below taken from a vantage point looking upwards from the volcanic floor. Notice the striped colors.


On the left picture you can clearly see the gray and brown stripes of the ash cloud that settled down on this area. You can see the individual components of the ash that have been affected by their environments. On the photograph to the right you can see the wind carvings created by our southwestern desert winds. They come down from the top-left to the bottom-right in an s-shaped pattern. The color variation is simply the different angles from which the light is hitting the sides of the volcano. The road log below should help you get to the volcanoes. They both have similar features but different are very different in size. Hope you enjoy them.


 0.0 - 2.7 - Leave the University Of Texas at El Paso and get onto Interstate 10 heading west although your compass will be pointing in a northerly direction.

 2.7 - 3.3 - Continue on Interstate ten until you reach the Mesa Street exit. Exit here but stay in the left lane, you will be turning left and passing under I-10.

 3.3 - 6.0 - Turning from the exit onto Mesa street you will be traveling in a westerly direction. Stay on this road until you get to the intersection with the railroad tracks, which you will cross over. The name will change from Mesa street to Country Club road. Follow this road until you get to NM270.

 4.9 - 10.9 - Turn right onto NM270 also known as McNutt Road, indicating you went from Texas to New Mexico, and follow this road north until you pas the Santa Teresa Airport.

 7.5 - 18.4 - Continue on and turn left on NM270 Also named Airport Road. It will curve sharply, follow this road until you cross the Santa Teresa Border crossing road. Turn Left On this highway which will immediately take you over a bridge that crosses a set of railroad tracks. Immediately after the bridge you will turn right onto a paved road that will lead you directly to the dirt road which leads to Aden, Afton, Kilbourne & Hunt's volcanic features.

 .7 - 19.1 - Cross the bridge, which will take you over the railroad tracks.

 .7 - 19.8 - Turn right onto this paved road immediately upon reaching the bottom of the bridge. Follow this road until you cross another paved road and the road becomes a dirt road.

 14.0 - 33.8 - You will be coming up to a dirt road that cuts off to your left follow this road until you get to a dirt road that cuts off to your right. You will not be able to see Kilbourne hole until you arrive at its edge, for this particular volcano looks more like a meteor impact crater.

 12.0 - 45.8 - You will drive the next 12 miles seeing nothing but flat desert until you see a small ridge a mile from the turn off to your right. This small ridge is part of the crater however you will be approaching from the flat side of the crater. At this point return right and proceed another .2 miles until you reach the edge of the volcano. Remember it will look lie a meteor impact crater at first but you will be able to see the basalt and ash layer from the side.






Special Thanks to Dr. BETSY JULAIN and DR. JERRY HOFFER

For the invaluable contributions and knowledge.

This page created by Markus G. Boenisch